Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deal W. Hudson & Deacon Keith Fournier

2/28/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (

We can only hope that Ambassador Flynn is tapped by CNN or MSNBC to comment on the Conclave

Our advice to all of you is to employ Cartesian doubt to 90 percent of what you hear about the Conclave, except from sources such as Father Morris and Ambassador Flynn.  You will find that most of what you are hearing is like the ball of wax that the philosopher Descartes in his Meditations held up to the fire and watched it evaporate, change shape, and turn into liquid, until nothing remained.

Catholic Cardinals in Conclave

Catholic Cardinals in Conclave

Article Highlights

By Deal W. Hudson & Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (

2/28/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Conclave, Vatican City, Cardinals, Sistine Chapel, catholic Church, Ray Flynn, Fr Jonathan Morris, main stream media, Vatican coverage, Deal W Hudson, Deacon Keith Fournier

WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - It's sad but predictable that most of the mainstream TV networks have chosen "to frame" the Conclave irresponsibly.  Their respective frames reflect the media's predictable, and reprehensible, attempt to discredit the Catholic Church while simultaneously boosting their notion of what qualities the new pope should embody. 

Hmmmmm, let's guess, would those qualities be tolerance, flexibility, pluralism, progressivism, and the "third world?" The problem with talking about mainstream media coverage nowadays is its utter predictability, akin to "shooting ducks in a barrel."  But it's a barrel of their own making and our responsibility as Catholic journalists to inoculate the public against their version of framing the Conclave.

Our good friend, former Vatican ambassador and Boston mayor, Ray Flynn, published some comments yesterday that summarize the media coverage with the authority of a man who spent many years as a Catholic in the Vatican. Ambassador Flynn, a master storyteller of Boston Irish persuasion, has also published an excellent novel about a papal Conclave, The Accidental Pope.

Ray Flynn writes:

"News coverage about the upcoming Conclave has been completely off the mark and doing a disservice to the public. Catholic viewers deserve more than controversy and scandal about the upcoming Conclave.  No insight or creative commentary. The same old questions being asked to critics with the same old answers given. The media spends more time trying to create controversy by interviewing  people who ideologically disagree with Church values."

Bear in mind that Ambassador Flynn is a lifelong Democrat who served as Vatican ambassador under President Clinton, who, by the way, Flynn took to task over Clinton's veto of the partial-birth abortion bill. Flynn is the truest embodiment we know of what is called a "Pro-life Democrat."  Flynn pinpoints the disservice being done to the public by media who interview faux experts "who are not only uninformed about the Conclave, but hostile to Christian values and traditions....consequently, concerned viewers get only sensational half true stories."

We can only hope that Ambassador Flynn is tapped by CNN or MSNBC to comment on the Conclave, rather than the typical far-left or dissenting Catholics who usually pop up over their logo. As Flynn explains:

"The conclave is not a political election, a soccer match, or a popularity contest.  The media should spend its time trying to figure out the issues of concern. What's really important to the future of the more than 1.3 billion Catholics throughout the world? The College of Cardinals is already discussing the problems and challenges facing the Church in a dramatically changing culture."

Like it or not, the media's coverage of the Conclave will be impacted by the Age of Obama: A moment when the left wing media enjoy privileged access to the White House, whose personnel go back and forth to these TV studios as if they were adjunct offices of the West Wing itself.

The one exception to all this is, of course, Fox News and the commentary of our friend Rev. Jonathan Morris who is already in the Vatican providing accurate and informed reports in the days leading up to the Conclave.  Rev. Morris, who spent most of his years as a priest in Rome, will undoubtedly be the most trusted source of information until the white smoke is seen over the Sistine Chapel.

Fox News is not always on the mark, but Father Jonathan Morris makes Fox News the only reliable source of TV commentary on how to frame the Conclave. If any of the other networks have the good sense to hire Ambassador Ray Flynn then we will be happy to add that network to the list of reliable sources. 

Our advice to all of you is to employ Cartesian doubt to 90 percent of what you hear about the Conclave, except from sources such as Father Morris and Ambassador Flynn.  You will find that most of what you are hearing is like the ball of wax that the philosopher Descartes in his Meditations held up to the fire and watched it evaporate, change shape, and turn into liquid, until nothing remained.


Pope Francis calls for your 'Prayer and Action'

© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
Respect for Women:
That all cultures may respect the rights and dignity of women.
Vocations: That many young people may accept the Lord’s invitation to consecrate their lives to proclaiming the Gospel.


More Europe

UFO caught on film in England, but it's not a spacecraft... Watch

Image of This mysterious ring lasted for about three minutes in the air before dissipating, according to the eyewitness.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A bizarre black ring is baffling experts in England, after it was filmed by a sixteen year old girl in Warwickshire. The ring apparently hung in the sky for three minutes before dissipating. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Nick Pope, a former adviser to the ... continue reading

Russia continues to devour Ukraine Watch

Image of Russia's Prime Minister, and former president of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev said that Ukraine is on the brink of civil war.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Vladimir Putin has continued his land grab in Ukraine, making it ever more apparent that the Russian president wants to reunite the old Soviet republics and from a new Soviet Union, even at the risk of causing a major war. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Russia ... continue reading

Immune to poison, GIANT rats terrify Great Britain Watch

Image of Nationwide, councils have reported a rise in the number of rats being reported. Birmingham has the highest number of call-outs with 5,100 in the past year.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Rats -- the size of cats" is a lyric in David Bowie's classic rock hymn "Diamond Dogs." It's a terrifying, dystopian vision that unfortunately coming true in Great Britain today, with rodents as large as two feet in length. Even worse, these monster rats have ... continue reading

Pope appoints Lady Margaret Scotford Archer to head Pontifical Academy Watch

Image of Lady Margaret Scotford Archer was born in Grenoside, U.K., and holds a Ph.D. from the University of London. She is currently a professor at l'Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland. She previously taught for many years at the University of Warwick in Great Britain.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Lady Margaret Scotford Archer has been appointed by Pope Francis to be President of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences." The group consists of scholars dedicated to studying issues in the social sciences in order to offer reflection and advice to the ... continue reading

Dissenting Priest Defies Church of England's Teaching on Marriage, 'Marries' his Homosexual Paramour Watch

Image of An Anglican priest has defied the Church of England's insistence that marriage is between one man and one woman by openly dissenting from the Scripture and Christian tradition and wedding his longtime homosexual companion. The 58-year-old Canon Jeremy Pemberton, a divorced hospital chaplain, wed 51-year-old Laurence Cunnington this past weekend.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A practicing homosexual priest has defied the Church of England's ban on homosexual and lesbian clergy marrying by wedding his longtime male homosexual companion. The 58-year-old Canon Jeremy Pemberton, a divorced hospital chaplain, wed his long-term homosexual ... continue reading

Who Am I? Homily of Pope Francis on the Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis

This week begins with the festive procession with olive branches: all the people welcome Jesus. The children, the young people sing, praising Jesus.But this week proceeds into the mystery of Jesus' death and his resurrection. We've heard the Passion of the Lord. ... continue reading

Pope Francis Gives Away New Testaments to the Faithful. Calls Catholics to Love the Bible Watch

Image of Pope Francis loves the Word of God and calls us to do the same

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Last month, at an Angelus prayer, Pope Francis asked the crowd how many of them read the Bible every day. The response was discouraging. He told them, "It is good to have a little Bible that you carry with you in your pocket or in your bag. Always carry a Bible ... continue reading

The Gift of Wisdom: Pope Francis Begins Series of Talks on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis

Today we begin a series of reflections on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the soul, the lifeblood of the Church and of every Christian: He is God's Love, who makes our hearts his home and enters into communion with us. The Holy Spirit is always ... continue reading

Holy Thursday: Francis to Wash the Feet of the Disabled, Call Us to Christian Discipleship Watch

Image of Francis washes the feet of Jesus, in prison

By Deacon Keith Fournier

The Vatican announced that Pope Francis will celebrate Holy Thursday Mass at Our Lady of Providence Center in Rome. The Center is run by the Father Carlo Gnocchi Foundation and is home to many disabled men and women with neuro-degenerative diseases, along with ... continue reading

More Americans on Medicaid than the entire population of the United Kingdom Watch

Image of The 72.7 Americans on Medicaid in fiscal 2013 also exceeded the populations of Thailand which is set at 67,741,401, France at 66,259,012 and Italy with a population of 61,680,122, according to the population numbers published in the CIA's World Factbook.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The number of Americans enrolled in Medicaid at any given time of fiscal 2013 exceeded the entire population of the United Kingdom, That's the shocking new data as published by the federal government's Medicaid and CHIP Payment Access Commission, or MACPAC. ... continue reading

All Europe News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 49:1-6
1 Coasts and islands, listen to me, pay attention, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 71:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 15, 17
1 In you, Yahweh, I take refuge, I shall never be put ... Read More

Gospel, John 13:21-33, 36-38
21 Having said this, Jesus was deeply disturbed and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 15th, 2014 Image

St. Paternus
April 15: St. Paternus.The first 5th century saint. He followed his ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook

Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter